Types of Roasts
Raw coffee beans are green!
Coffee is a small bush that grows in tropical regions of the world. The raw green beans are harvested from red cherry-like fruits. The roasting process brings out the familiar brown color, as well as dramatically influencing the flavor of your brew. Medium and light roasts tend to better show off the delicate differences in single-origin beans, although origin is also important in determining the final character of darker roasts. Read below for more information about each of the roast levels.
Cinnamon Roast (Lightest)
A very light roast level. Light brown with sharp acidity, almost tea-like in character.
This is where the "sweet spot" for coffee begins -- any lighter than American Roast, and most coffees taste grassy and strange. Caleb's Coffee doesn't use the Cinnamon Roast level.
American Roast (Light)
A preferred roast for some specialty singe-origin drinkers, this roast highlights origin characteristics as well as preserving a complex acidity.
Half-City Roast (Medium-Light)
Medium light brown. Origin character is still completely preserved, although acidity is reduced.
City Roast (Medium)
Medium brown, common for most specialty coffee. Good for tasting the varietal character of a bean, although roast character is noticeable.
Full City Roast (Medium-Dark)
Medium dark brown with occasional oil sheen. Roast character is fairly prominent, but some origin character is preserved.
Vienna Roast (Dark)
Moderate dark brown with light surface oil, more bittersweet, caramel flavor, acidity muted. Origin characteristics become nearly eclipsed by roasting flavors at this level.
French Roast (Darker)
Dark brown, shiny with oil, burnt undertones, acidity diminished. Roast character is dominant at this level. Little, if any, of the inherent flavors of the specific variety of coffee remain.
This is where the "sweet spot" for coffee ends-- any darker than French Roast, and all of the actual coffee flavor is burnt out. Caleb's Coffee doesn't use the Italian or Spanish Roast levels.
Italian Roast (Darkest)
Very dark brown and shiny, burnt tones become more distinct, acidity almost gone, thinner body.
Spanish Roast (Too Dark)
Extremely dark brown, nearly black and very shiny, charcoal and tar tones dominate, flat, with thin body.
Content on this page is adapted from Wikipedia and is used (and is available for re-use) under the Creative Commons license.
Raw, green coffee beans
Full City Roast